Saturday, August 27, 2011

“Uh, I think I think I pulled something…” -Me about 30 minutes after my first Crossfit class

                There are no two ways about it, my first Crossfit class was a little intimidating.  I had watched a few videos online, so I was prepared for the warehouse-like atmosphere, and knew the workout would be tough.  The woman I spoke to on the phone prior to my first class did her best to screen my fitness abilities.  I told her that I found out about Crossfit from an article in Hers Muscle Fitness.  That little nugget must have sold her on my fitness level.  Buuuuttt, just because I subscribe to Hers Muscle Fitness does  not mean I follow all of their training tenets, like refraining from Chex Mix or pizza or creamer in my coffee.

Is this me yet?  It is going to take way more than Crossfit for that!  This lady does not enjoy Mexican pizza and Rolling Rock apparently.  Six pack abs and killer shoulders are just not worth giving those things up.
                 What it also did not mean, which we would both soon discover, was that I knew enough about Olympic Power Lifting.  I figured it couldn’t be that different from the free weight lifting I already do now. Wrong.  Let me back up for a minute, because despite this problem, it was NOT the first and most pressing issue.  My first problem, which they really need to find a way to warn you about, was bladder control.  No, I do not wear Depends, but I do have the bladder the size of a shrunken walnut.  Ladies, if you have had children, take heed.  Use the bathroom before you start a Crossfit class!  Why?  Because it is all about jumping.  Crossfit workouts consist of different rotations.   They post a WOD (wad) workout of the day, up on a huge dry erase board.  The workout consists of three or four exercises which you are to then do a certain number of times in row for time.  On this particular day the WOD was:  1. Jumping pull-ups  2.  dead lifts 205/315 and 60 single jumps.  Now, that was the main workout, the warm up had consisted of burpees where bend down and slam your chest against the ground before you pop up to reach and jump toward the ceiling, more pull ups and sit ups.  Let’s focus on the jumping though.  Considering that just a few weeks ago I ripped a hole in my workout pants while doing squats without realizing it and ended up with my ass hanging out for 30 minutes before a very kind and embarrassed gentlemen told me about it, I was a tad worried about peeing my pants in front of several seriously pumped up people in a warehouse with only one exit door.  So, this is my service to you women out there, do this little test to check for pee-vulnerability before you try a class.  Jump up and down as fast and as hard as you can for a minute.  If you passed, super, you can try a class without any extra equipment.  If not, well then I don’t need to tell you that you will need to pack some extra supplies before you start class.

Check out this link for an example of jumping pull ups:

                Back to the power lifting, did you notice the 205/315 numbers next to the dead lifts on the WOD?  That is the prescribed amount of weight we should be lifting for a female/male.  I was supposed to be dead lifting 205 pounds!  When I went to try a dead lift, I was apparently doing a Romanian dead lift.  Duh, of course those are sooooo different.  My coach, a female in her 2O’s who is also a rowing star of some sort, tried her best to remain patient with me, but I got a little flustered as she was helping me get my body set up.  Her: “Move you feet under your hips.”  Me: I move my feet back.  Her: “ No UNDER your hips”  Me: I move them up again.  Apparently I had no idea where the hell my own hips were.  I finally got it right, or at least she walked away from me, her thinly veiled expression saying, “How did you get into this class?”   I started working up in weight to see how close I could get to 205 pounds.  I stopped at 95.  That turned out to be the magic number that was hard enough and also reassured me that I would roll out of class wheelchair.
                After dealing with those two problems, I had the time of my life.  The workout moved quickly and challenged me to work harder than I have worked in awhile.  The class was pretty small and despite the fact that we were all working our tails off, a sense of camaraderie prevailed.  The coach kept track of all of reps and times on the huge dry erase board which provided motivation.  When she shouted “Nice job Kate” as I completed a final dead lift with the best form I could, I felt a surge of pride. The hour flew by and I enjoyed it immensely.
                The following three days I discovered that rolling over in bed took quite a bit of effort.  My back filed abuse charges with headquarters and it took awhile for things to settle down in that area.  It was also a little tricky turning my head after whatever it was that tore in my shoulder. That healed too.   Would I take another class?  Umm… YEAH!   My back was just a normal good workout sore.  My shoulder, well, I am choosing to believe that I pulled it doing something else, like maybe brushing my hair or waving to the kids on the bus.  Before I can take any more regular classes I need to take their “On Ramp” class to make sure I use proper form so I don’t get hurt.  That is probably a good idea.

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